Crushing Iron Triathlon Podcast

Find out why thousands of beginner, intermediate, and advanced athletes are improving their training and racing with accessible, functional and genuine conversation about triathlon. An Age Group triathlete and his coach, who aren't afraid to laugh at themselves,look for smart and enjoyable solutions in a sport that's often dumb and painful. Mike Tarrolly and Robbie Bruce explore the mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual side of training and racing everything from Ironman to a Sprint. on Monday and Thursday.
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Jan 25, 2018

Imagine playing basketball in front of 70,000 people and millions on TV. Today's guest, Zak Showalter, did just that for the University of Wisconsin. His career took him to 2 different Final Fours and four Sweet 16's and now he's tackling Ironman.

He's graduated, stepped away from basketball, and turned his sights on Ironman Wisconsin. Our goal for this podcast was to see how many lessons learned from Zak's days at Wisconsin under Hall of Fame coach Bo Ryan translate into triathlon. As it turned out, a lot of them do.

We start with some of Zak’s endurance background and early training challenges. Then go into how what he learned on the basketball floor can be translated into Ironman training: 

  • Were you ever into endurance sports before?
  • What it's like hanging out with Packer's QB Aaron Rodgers 
  • What it was like to work with Michael Jordan’s strength coach
  • When he decided he wanted to do an Ironman 
  • How he deals with Winter training in Wisconsin
  • What's it like going from a high exposure team sport to an isolated training world?
  • A coach’s message “Play hard, play smart, play together, and have fun.”

Race like you train - Zak tells us how what he learned from the daily grind of college basketball practice and how he thinks it can be applied to triathlon training and best set him up for the race.

Ups and Downs - How to stay level headed and on the same path when faced with setbacks of a big loss or the the high of a big win. 

Patience Wisconsin basketball is built on patience, both in execution and sytem. Zak gives us a perspective on how they looked at a long season or career and how the philosophies can apply to Ironman training.

Emotions- He takes us in the locker room before Wisconsin faced off with a 38-0 Kentucky team at the Final Four. How is it possible to stay calm when you’re running out in front of 70,000 people to play a game watched by millions? He gives us a very simple solution. 

Diet: How did you guys eat? Was there a big focus on nutrition or were you just kids? Has that changed as you train for Ironman? 

Here are a couple videos of Zak in his playing days:
- His salute to Aaron Rodgers after hitting a buzzer beater against Florida
- High School State Championship Opening Tip Dunk

Zak on Instagram: zshowalter3
Zak on Twitter: @ZShowbball333

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